|According to his agent, Ryan Kesler could be out of the Canucks lineup until December. (Getty Images)|
Ryan Kesler's recovery from offseason shoulder and wrist surgery is not going exactly as planned to this point, and according to his agent Kurt Overhardt he could be out of the Canucks lineup until December.
“It's not happening,” Overhardt said, via Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Province on Thursday. “He's not ahead of schedule and there's no rushing him back. He's on course to return in December and he's not returning until he's 100 per cent. Don't expect him until December.”
(you can insert your own start of the season/lockout joke here.)
If Kesler misses the first couple months of the season it would obviously put a pretty big dent in the Canucks depth down the middle. They would still have Henrik Sedin handling the top-line duties, but they would then be left with Manny Malhotra and Maxim Lapierre behind him. Good players, very useful players, but not exactly guys that can fill in that spot on the second line.
The Canucks reportedly met with free agent forward Shane Doan earlier this week, and may also be interested in adding veteran center Jason Arnott if things don't work out with Doan.
Kesler is coming off a bit of a down year with the Canucks (perhaps due to injury) finishing the 2011-12 season with 49 points (22 goals, 27 assists) in 77 games. He finished with 75 and 73 points over the previous two saesons.